Recipe prepared by: Milka Debeljak in Mišo Kolar Published: 09. 12. 2019
Sweet pastries


Decorated with as many birds as there are children in the house and it brings joy at Christmas time


  • 1 kg white wheat flour
  • 100 g butter
  • 1 whole egg
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 5 - 6 dl milk
  • 30 g sugar or flower honey
  • 20 g vanilla sugar
  • 42 g yeast
  • 10 - 15 g salt
  • 4 g grated lemon peel
  • 2 cl rum
  • egg yolk and sweet cream for coating
Sweet pastries


Decorated with as many birds as there are children in the house and it brings joy at Christmas time

From the above ingredients, knead the dough by sifting the flour into a bowl, put the yeast in the flour and add all the other ingredients (you can also add a little grated lemon peel), except the milk.

We add a milk gradually during the kneading of the dough, so that we can estimate when there will be enough liquid in the dough to be medium hard and just right. Form the dough into a loaf and leave it to rise for 20 minutes.

Knead the leavened dough and leave a third of the dough on the side for decorations.

From the remaining dough, form a loaf and slightly press it to slightly level the surface. Let the loaf rise again, but in the meantime prepare the decorations for the »poprtnik«. With them, the »poprtnik« can be decorated in different ways.

We design decorations as desired, we make braids, birds or other decorations for the “poprtnik”.

To make a longer braid, make 4 long strips from the dough for decorations, set them in the shape of the letter A and squeeze them at the top, then weave the braid from the 4 strips and squeeze the strips together at the end. With the long braid surrounded the “poprtnik” (we can also make several smaller braids and surrounded or cover the “poprtnik” with them in any way we like). We make birds from smaller strips, but we can also make some other decorations (stars, years …).

When the loaf rises again, coat it with water while decorating it with dough ornaments. Before baking, coat with a mixture of yolk and cream.

Bake it for 50 min at 180 ° C.

Milka Debeljak is the bearer of the intangible heritage of »poprtnik«. Informal groups of housewives in geographically rounded areas are registered as bearers of the heritage of »poprtnik« at the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia. She is an active volunteer of the Parnas Institute from Veliki Lašče. She passes her knowledge and skills about the »poprtnik« on children, high school students, vocational college students and the general public through workshops. She also participated in a film about the »poprtnik« (https://zavod-parnas.org/w/poprtnik/) and she actively participates in the implementation of the Christmas bread festival. The festival is organized by the Parnas Institute with partners and takes place from November to January as part of the project »Uživam tradicijo – Enjoy Tradition«. Mišo Kolar, who prepared »poprtnik«, is a teacher of practical training and a leader of a bakery workshop at BIC Ljubljana.

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